The £294m (2012 prices) project with 30 miles of new track and seven new stations was delivered on time and within budget. The new line delivers major economic and social development opportunities by providing a fast and efficient rail link connecting communities in the Scottish Borders and Midlothian to Edinburgh and beyond. It significantly increases the accessibility of jobs for the people of Midlothian and the Scottish Borders. As a result of creating an attractive public transport alternative to the car, approximately 60,000 peak car trips per year will be cut from the region’s roads.

Borders Railway Services

The current Borders timetable offers passengers a half-hourly service on weekdays and Saturdays, including peak time cross-Edinburgh services to and from Fife, In addition it offers a 5.25 am service departing Tweedbank connecting to Kings Cross services from Waverley which would allow passengers to be in London before 11 am.

Details of the Borders Railway timetable and fares can be found on the ScotRail website.

Borders Railway Opening celebrations

The Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure, Investment and Cities requested that the Borders Railway Opening Celebrations Committee (BROCC) be established to advise Transport Scotland as they developed plans for the Opening Celebrations.  Membership of this group included all three local authorities (Edinburgh City, Midlothian and Scottish Borders), VisitScotland, Network Rail, BAM Nuttall and ScotRail.

A large scale 2 day event was delivered to mark this opening.  The Union of South Africa steam train marked the official route opening during the 2 day event.

The opening event included a Golden Ticket experience for local residents and those interested in the railway on Saturday 5 September 2015.  The majority of tickets were distributed by the local authorities through public competitions.

The Borders Railway was officially opened by Her Majesty The Queen on the day that she became Britain's longest serving monarch, Wednesday 9 September 2015

Borders Railway Blueprint

On 17 November 2014, the First Minister set out an ambition to realise the full economic benefits of the new Borders Railway, transform tourism opportunities and open up communities in South-East Scotland as new places to live, work, visit, learn, play and grow.

In addition to the 600,000 journeys expected to take place, the First Minister declared that Midlothian and the Borders should aim over time at attracting 1 million travellers down the new railway line.

Plans include:

  • Shawfair, a 4,000 new home community with local amenities and a school build around the rail way in Midlothian due to open in September 2016
  • A pilot scenic steam train experience
  • An iconic home for the Great Tapestry of Scotland
  • A modern Central Borders Business Park
  • Making existing attractions, such as the National Mining Museum Scotland at Newtongrange, more accessible as a result of new, faster public transport links

A steam train experience, first announced by the First Minister on 20 August 2014, operated as a “taster” service from September 2015 for 6 weeks and carried 6.500 passengers.

For further information on the project, please see the Borders Railway website